Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




P. Murgatroyd


The earliest extant detailed accounts of the story of Heracles and Hylas date from the Hellenistic Age when it is treated Apollonius 1.1172-1272) and by Theocritus by (Id. 13) . While scholars, have discussed the episode in the Argonautica, no one, to my knowledge, has undertaken to investigate the passage in great detail. Rather Kohnken, for example, attempts to prove that Theocritus' Idyll was written first and that Apollonius' treatment is artistically superior and Lawall is specifically concerned with Apollonius' characterisation of Heracles.

While this thesis does not neglect the relationship of the episode to the Argonautica as a whole, its greater concern is the episode itself: the mythological background to the Hylas myth, ~ 1.1172-1272, how characterisation of the structure, chronology and pace of Apollonius deals with setting, the both Hylas and Heracles, and finally a detailed critical appreciation of the whole passage.

There is no attempt here to determine whether Apollonius or Theocritus wrote first or whose work is superior. Theocritus' account (Id. 13) as well as the later version by Propertius (1.20) are considered briefly at the end.

It is hoped that this analysis will provide a greater understanding and Appreciation of the Hylas myth in Argonautica 1.1172-1272.

McMaster University Library

Files over 3MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."

Included in

Classics Commons